Darnella Frazier, the 18-year-old who used her cell phone to record George Floyd’s murder at the hands of Minneapolis police, continues to be honored for her bravery. The Pulitzer Prize Board announced on Friday afternoon that Frazier would be given an honorary Pulitzer Prize for journalism.
“The board has awarded a Special Citation to Darnella Frazier, the teenage witness who filmed and posted the transformative video that jolted viewers and spurred protests against police brutality around the world,” announced Mindy Marques, co-chair of the Pulitzer Prize Board.
In the virtual announcement, the Pulitzer Prize Board noted how the tragic killing of Floyd highlighted not only the essential nature of journalism but also the crucial role ordinary citizens can play in the “quest for truth and justice.”
Frazier was just 17 years old when she and her younger cousin arrived on the scene of Floyd’s fatal arrest on May 25, 2020, while headed to Cup Foods for snacks.
At the trial for Derek Chauvin, the former Minneapolis police officer convicted of murdering Floyd by pressing his knee into his neck for over nine minutes, Frazier bravely took the stand and told of how she remains haunted by what she witnessed that fateful Memorial Day.
In her statement honoring the one-year anniversary of Floyd’s death, Frazier said, in part:
“A lot of people call me a hero even though I don’t see myself as one. I was just in the right place at the right time. Behind this smile, behind these awards, behind the publicity, I’m a girl trying to heal from something I am reminded of every day…
“If it weren’t for my video, the world wouldn’t have known the truth. I own that. My video didn’t save George Floyd, but it put his murderer away and off the streets. You can view George Floyd anyway you choose to view him, despite his past, because don’t we all have one? He was a loved one, someone’s son, someone’s father, someone’s brother, and someone’s friend.”